Women's Golfer Perseveres, Adopts New Outlook Following Car … – University of Toledo

Toledo women’s golfer Kathryn Roth had just played her best tournament as a Rocket at the Spring Break Shootout in Florida last March when fate dropped her into an unwelcome bunker.
Shortly after shooting a career-best score, the Waterville native was involved in a serious car accident with her parents. Kathryn was taken to the emergency room and was diagnosed with a back injury and a concussion from which she is still feeling the effects of to this day.
CELEBRATING SUCCESS: UToledo recognizes the Class of 2023 with a series of stories featuring students receiving their degrees at spring commencement.
“My recovery was rough,” she said. “I tried playing in a tournament 10 days after the accident and really struggled. Looking back at it I shouldn’t have played. After that, I didn’t even swing a club for a few months. My parents and I were very lucky to come out of the accident with only the injuries we sustained.”
Roth was eventually cleared to return to competition in the fall, but not being able to practice or play during the summer set her back.
“I still have some sensitivity to sunlight and am still working through back pain,” she said. “I have tried not to change my approach and wanted to try to get back to where I was before the accident. That’s been my main goal, and even though I haven’t got there yet I’m still working on it.”
Head coach Jenny Coluccio has been impressed with Roth’s determination to keep playing.
“Kathryn was definitely held back a lot by her injuries,” Coluccio said. “She remained dedicated to getting better even with her pain. It would have been easy for someone in her position to give up, but she refused.”
Although Roth couldn’t compete at the level she wanted to in her final season as a Rocket, her contributions to the program didn’t go unnoticed.
“Her commitment level to our program is extremely high,” Coluccio said. “She has set a strong example for everyone. She showed that no matter what your status on the team is, you still need to put the work in.”
Kathryn Roth graduated from UToledo May 7. She is pictured, from left to right, with her mother, Jennifer, sister, Allie, boyfriend, Nolan, and father, Jay.
Roth displayed that type of work ethic when she decided to pick up the game of golf when she was in eighth grade. She had played softball for most of her childhood but thought golf would be a better option for her when she began attending Notre Dame Academy.
“My dad played golf, and I was around him a lot when he played,” she said. “I thought making the transition from softball to golf would be easy, but I found out quickly that it wouldn’t be since their swings are totally different.”
With a lot of hard work, Roth ended up becoming a three-time Northwest Ohio Girls Golf League first-team selection at NDA. A chance to play with the Rockets ensued and she accepted.
“I wasn’t even thinking about playing college golf when I started high school, so when the opportunity to play at Toledo came about it was perfect,” she said. “I was interested in their academic programs, and it was a chance to keep playing a sport I love.”
Roth also has put a lot of work in the classroom at UToledo and will have numerous career paths to choose from. A biology major, she also pursued minors in chemistry and business to give her options following her graduation last weekend.
“I’ve always loved to learn,” said Roth, who holds a 3.510 grade point average. “I was very undecided about what to major in and always liked science and math. Having two minors will be something that helps me when I decide to go to graduate school.”
Toledo women’s golfer Kathryn Roth was involved in a serious car accident with her parents and diagnosed with a back injury and a concussion, but she was determined to keep playing.
That decision though is being put on hold by Roth for the time being. She would first like to work in a local lab and experience something similar to what she learned in her developmental biology class last fall.
“I really liked that class because it was very hands-on,” she said. “We did things in that class that I know would be like what I may be doing in a lab. We studied a lot of different organisms like drosophila and frogs from the very beginning until they finally evolved. We learned a lot about each of their life stages.”
And now that Roth is entering a new stage in her life, she realizes she is fortunate to have the opportunity take advantage of all that she’s learned and the connections she’s made during her four years at UToledo.
“Being involved in the accident put everything in perspective for me on what is really important in life, and I am thankful to be alive,” she said. ‘I feel I have learned a lot and matured in college with the extra responsibilities you take on. The lifelong connections I’ve made with my teammates as well as people in the community and host families we have stayed with have been amazing.”
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